Sharjah: His Highness Dr Shaikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, and his wife, Shaikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, Chairperson of the Supreme Council for Family Affairs, opened the third edition of the Sharjah International Children’s Film Festival (SICFF 2015) on Sunday.
During the opening ceremony, Dr Shaikh Sultan honoured the winners of the SICFF awards in six categories. The categories included best film made by children, best short film from the Gulf, best animation film, best international short film, best documentary film, and the best feature film. The winners were given cash prizes and a trophy.
Winners include Emirati directors Aisha Al Shurafa and Fatima Al Mazimi, who bagged the award for the best film made by children for their film ‘The Other Neighborhood’, while HashimSharaf from Bahrain won the best short film in the Gulf award, for his film ‘Sorej’.
The best animation film award went to French director Carlos De Carvalho for his film “Autumn Leaves”, while Tunisian filmmaker AnisLassoued received the best international short film prize for his film “My Shoes”. Holland director Marleen Van der Werf won the best documentary film award for her film “Once upon a Tree”, and Ethiopian Swiss Stefan Jager got the best feature film award for his film “Horizon Beautiful”.
Three films – “Don’t Ignore Me” by Emirati director Maitha Nasser Baroot; “Ice Flower” by Egyptian director Sheren Abu Ouf; and “The Fantastic Flying Book of Mr Morris Lessmore” by US directors William Joyce and Brandon Oldenburge, received appreciation certificates and a special mention from the jury.
The six-day festival, the first of its kind in the UAE and region, is organised by FUNN – the Sharjah-based foundation dedicated to promoting media arts among children and young people in the UAE.
Speaking on the occasion, Shaikha Jawaher bint Abdullah Al Qasimi, Director of FUNN and Director of SICFF, said, “We have introduced major changes and developments into this year’s edition in line with our commitment to making the festival bigger and better year after year. The 2015 edition will see the showcasing of 175 films from 20 countries, alongside a variety of exciting activities and hands-on workshops. We are optimistic about increasing the number of visitors as we expect roughly 20,000 visitors to the festival and its parallel events.”
The film screenings will be held for the first time in seven cities outside Sharjah city, including Al Dhaid, KhorFakkan, Dibba Al Hisn, Kalba, Al Madam, Al Hamriyah and Al Batayeh